American Widow - Making the Graphic Novel Proud

You'll be compelled to finish this new graphic novel in one evening, so powerful and gripping is its story.

Alissa Torres' husband had finally landed a new job and he was excited to begin - it was in the North Tower of the World Trade Center and his first day was September 10, 2001.

Alissa, seven months pregnant, finds herself a day later a widow, first desperately seeking her husband's body and then later, navigating the nightmare that was the Red Cross' assistance program for those affected by the 9/11 tragedy.

A graphic novel is the perfect medium for American Widow's story. Sungyoon Choi's artwork is simple and evocative and plays perfectly off the text, similarly direct. How can you put in words a tragedy of such proportions? Alissa's feeling of regret of resenting her husband right before he died, the prospect of raising her son without his father, her despair at losing her husband so early in their marriage, her hopelessness when facing down the bureaucratic entanglements and politics of relief agencies is all channeled brilliantly by the stark art and direct prose.

American Widow is a testament to the belief that art is necessary in the healing process when faced with an evil so brutal, so unthinkable.

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